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This document was developed to describe in detail the structure and content of a veterinary radiology residency training program which will meet the expectations of the American College of Veterinary Radiology (ACVR) and to act as a guide for institutions desiring formal accreditation by the ACVR of their radiology residency training program.
Veterinary radiology encompasses a variety of diagnostic imaging techniques, including the following five core areas: all aspects of Roentgen diagnosis; diagnostic ultrasound; computed tomography (CT); magnetic resonance imaging (MRI); and diagnostic nuclear medicine. All residency training programs must offer a quality postdoctoral medical educational experience of adequate scope and depth in these five areas.
III. Training Period
The program shall offer a minimum of 3 years (36 months) of postdoctoral medical education in veterinary radiology, of which at least 30 months of training must be supervised clinical experience.
IV. Direction and Supervision
The program director, in addition to supervising and administering the training program in veterinary radiology, must also be actively involved in the training and instruction of residents.
The faculty in the program must be qualified in those areas in which they are assigned to instruct and supervise residents and must contribute sufficient time to the program to ensure adequate instruction.
V. Affiliation Agreement
When the resources of two or more institutions are to be utilized for the clinical education of a resident in veterinary radiology, letters of agreement must be provided.
The program must provide adequate space, equipment, and other pertinent facilities to ensure an effective educational experience for residents in veterinary radiology. The facility must have on-site access to modern radiographic equipment including fluoroscopy, modern B-mode ultrasound, and either computed tomography or MRI. Veterinary patients in the training facility(ies) must have regular on-site access to these modalities where residents can be expected to be involved in the acquisition and interpretation of such studies.
Access to equipment to support the other core areas need not be on-site, but in those instances organized and maintained self study modules with actual imaging studies from these modalities must be available.
VII. Clinical Resources
The program in veterinary radiology must provide a sufficient volume and variety of patients for instruction and in addition to dogs, cats, and horses, must include food and exotic animals. If caseload is low, organized teaching files in under-represented species may be substituted. The imaging caseload of the program must be greater than 7,000 imaging studies1 annually, if the program is to be completed within the minimum 36 month period.
VIII. Training Content
The program must provide an adequate depth and breadth of clinical experience.
Formal didactic classes or organized self-study modules must be included in:
Formal courses, organized self-study modules or supervised practical experience must be included to provide the resident knowledge of the basic patterns of disease and principles of interpretation of disease in:
The radiologic education in different organ systems should provide the opportunity for residents to develop adequate knowledge regarding normal and pathologic anatomy and physiology, including the biologic and pharmacologic actions of materials administered to patients in diagnostic studies.
If an optional graduate degree is available in the program, the impact of the degree option must be explicitly stated. If the optional degree program dilutes the clinical experience below the 70% clinical commitment, during the first 36 months of the program it must be submitted as a separate alternative program.
IX. Research Environment
The program should provide an environment in which a resident is encouraged to engage in investigative work with appropriate faculty supervision. These projects may take the form of basic research in research laboratories or an assimilation of well-analyzed clinical material or even the reporting of individual cases. Documentation of this environment should be made in the institution's application and indicated by published papers or scientific presentations by residents and/or clinical faculty.
X. Educational Environment
The education in diagnostic radiology should occur in an environment which encourages the interchange of knowledge and experience among residents and staff in the program, as well as with residents in other major clinical specialties located in those institutions participating in the program.
Residents should be provided ample opportunity to present formal lectures. It is expected that each resident will prepare and present a minimum of 3 lectures or scientific presentations during the course of the residency training program.
The in-training evaluation of resident performance and progress must be documented at least yearly through appropriate techniques, including faculty appraisal, oral or written tests, or a combination of these. One measure of the quality of the program is the performance of its graduates on examinations for certification by the ACVR.
XII. Teaching File
A teaching file of images referable to all aspects of diagnostic imaging must be available for use by residents. This file should be indexed, coded, and currently maintained.
Conferences and teaching rounds must be correlated and provide for progressive resident participation. These should be not only intradepartmental conferences, but should involve each major clinical department. They should be of sufficient frequency and include both residents and staff participation on a regular basis.
At least 12 Known Case Conferences must be provided annually.2
XIV. Literature Resources
The program shall provide a sufficient variety of journals, references, and resource materials pertinent to progressive levels of education in diagnostic radiology and associated fields, all of which should be immediately accessible for resident study. In addition, residents should have access to a general medical library.
1) An imaging study is defined as a study of an anatomical area (e.g., thorax, abdomen, fetlock, stifle, etc.). Multiple examinations may be performed on a single patient. A heavy caseload cannot reduce the minimum time commitment; however, a low caseload may extend the actual time commitment beyond the minimum.
2) In Known Case Conferences the faculty selects cases that the resident has never seen, and where the diagnosis/outcome has been unequivocally confirmed. These cases are then presented to the residents as unknowns. These conferences may take different forms, but they must be designed to test the progress of the resident's pattern recognition and medical decision making skills.
©2013 American College of Veterinary Radiology